For the first time in 25 years, Paris Saint-Germain is in the semifinals of the UEFA Champions League. Many expected PSG to get to this stage of the tournament but very few envisioned that it would face as difficult of a challenge as it encountered against Borussia Dortmund and Atalanta. The latter provided PSG with a thrilling fixture to remember and even had former PSG players on their seats in anticipation of a possible late comeback, which the club was able to indeed pull off.
For instance, former PSG midfielder Valdo watched the fixture and was in awe of just how much of a battle it became for the reigning Ligue 1 champions. In an interview with PSG TV, Valdo reflected on the recent Champions League fixture.
“It was a very intense match, very intense,” Valdo said. “Paris was 1-0 down and until the end, the players were warriors on the field. That’s where the love and determination between the players made for an explosive mix. Paris Saint-Germain showed they had it all: the complicity between the players, the quality, and the victory was deserved.”
Valdo was thoroughly impressed with Neymar’s performance. The Brazilian forward created five goal-scoring chances and notched the game-winning assist. Valdo lauded Neymar and his game-changing mentality during the contest.
“It’s true that Neymar missed two opportunities that he usually scores,” Valdo said. “But we could feel he was in the game. When he plays at that level, there’s no tactical system to stop him. A bit like Mbappe or Messi. When it’s the right night, he’s unstoppable. Neymar had a lot of space, and on counter-attacks he was really impressive.”
Valdo also admired forward Kylian Mbappe and his hope that the Frenchman’s ankle sprain injury will not hinder his ability to play in the upcoming semifinal contest against RB Leipzig.
“As for Mbappe … if I’m the Atalanta coach and I see Kylian Mbappé coming on, I’m already very worried,” Valdo said. “It already means it’s impossible to stop him, and the same goes for Neymar, it’s very complicated. That’s the strength of having a squad like Paris Saint-Germain. Let’s hope now that Kylian will be at 100% for the next game, so that the opponents can’t sleep well.”
Mbappe was subbed in during the second half of the quarterfinal tie against Atalanta and should be ready to feature against RB Leipzig as well.
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